I was 15 years old when I met my children's father, a freshman in high school. My home situation- lets just say I was in a dark place. My dad was a heavy alcoholic at the time and my mom did a lot of crying, and the abuse was real. So when I met my children's father I thought he was my prince charming but he was also my ticket out of a nightmare. That's the best way to describe it, a nightmare. This weekend I will share my testimony with a few friends and I will be completely transparent with them. One day the world but out of respect for my family and how it hurts them, we are not ready yet. Thankfully God is a "Just in time" God. That is the title of my autobiography as my dad made a huge turnaround in his life, and I would like to honor his memory one day with this book. Till then stay tuned.
This past weekend I was on my way to a wedding and it was a long drive, so I played my audible book on my way. I was listening to, "Letters to the church" by Francis Chan. There was a chapter on Sacredness. He talked about these scriptures in the bible, and how they frustrated him. ME TOO! And it all brought me back to my ex husband. Let me explain a little:
First, Moses was frustrated with the people of Israel. They kept harassing him and he got frustrated and struck the rock and water flowed. God was so upset Moses didn't get to see the promise land. Seriously, who hasn't lost their cool with people. Pastors with their flock. Moms with their children. Managers with their staff. I thought that was a little harsh. Then there was Uzzah who was transporting the ark under Davids order and the ark hit a pot hole and he put his hands on the ark to keep it from falling. Uzzah died once he touched the ark. Seriously? He had good intentions. Was that necessary. Then there was Saul who was going to war, he waited days for Samuel to make a sacrifice to God. He lost his patience and did it himself. God was so upset with Saul he stripped him of the kingdom. Seriously, who hasn't lost patience in the wait? Then Ananias and his wife in the New Testament, they lied about what they gave in the offering. Listen, I work in the office at church and I hear people say all the time that they tithe and I wonder if they even know what tithe means cause I know they don't tithe. But like Francis said in his book, "who doesn't exaggerate"
These are scriptures I struggled with too then he said, "When you rush into something sacred you pay the price". And it flooded me, the memory:
My wedding day
I was so young and so desperate to make things right for my family that I begged for a marriage. I will never forget the day when we jumped in the car went to a justice of the peace and got married. The house smelled of moth balls, the furniture was wrapped in plastic, the decor out of the Brady bunch era. The only witness we had was the wife of the man who married us. It was the only thing that seemed right to do at the time. I wanted to stop feeling guilty about having a family and not being married. As soon as we signed our certificate we got in the car to tell my parents. I thought they would be happy that I was making right. Instead they cried and my dad said, "I had hoped to one day walk you down the isle". We couldn't afford a wedding and I wanted to make it right now not when I could afford it.
Marriage is a sacred union that I did not go to God with to consult . I demanded the blessing from him. Needless to say I paid the price. I was abused in his drunken moments, my kids cried often when mommy and daddy fought. Then one day I couldn't take it anymore. I realized I had moved from one nightmare to another and was subjecting my kids to it. But I knew God hated divorce, so I stayed longer than I should have. Then one day at church they talked about how young girls were marrying their fathers. Then it hit me- I can't do this to my children. I divorced still loving him. But I had to protect my family. It had gotten that bad.
Depression hit us all. They say that divorce is second to death in trauma. They are right! I felt like everything died. I died so I didn't know who I was. My kids were dealing with death as they had fears of being abandoned. I screwed up. I screwed up bad. I rushed into something sacred and paid the price. DEATH, just not physical death.
It took years to find myself again, and I always feel guilty about how much my children suffered. Ten years and ten days to the date of my divorce I remarried. I was hesitant but God kept pointing Clark out. I will tell that story another day. But by the time I got it right, meaning I was entering something sacred seeking God's guidance and approval, my dad had passed away. He didn't get to see me, he didn't get to walk me down the isle and he didn't get to dance with me. "I'm so sorry Papi" (taking a moment)
God does make good on the messes we create. He will use everything, even the stuff you are ashamed of or prefer to hide, to help others. For His Glory.
Don't rush into what is sacred. It belongs to God, don't steal it from HIM. When you do you pay a price and I often feel maybe God feels like my dad did when I stole his moment to walk me down the isle. I just envision God wanting to walk you down the isle to something. Maybe a new job, maybe a relationship, maybe a marriage, maybe the promise land whatever it is, don't rob Him of that.